Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #FlavorsOfFall #CollectiveBias
Now that fall is here, I am all about pie. Okay, I’m all about pie all year round, but fall is when everyone around me seems to get on my level and start thinking about pie. And while everyone is getting super jazzed about pumpkin (which I totally, 100% understand, because pumpkin is amazing), I geek out for another fall flavor: pear. Pears are maybe my favorite fruit to eat out of hand. I like to stand over the kitchen sink, taking bite after drippy bite, while the juices flow down my chin and through my fingers. It’s not elegant, but neither am I.
I was doing my weekly grocery shopping at Giant Eagle, and right in front of the entrance I saw this “Fall Flavor Fest” display with Pear Ginger Cider. My heart skipped a beat and it had to be mine. This is why I love shopping at Giant Eagle (especially the Market District near me). I’m always inspired by the new things I find there and I’ll walk out all excited to get into the kitchen. I will legit wander up and down the aisles for hours, circling the store two or three times until I have fully invented a recipe. I find it cathartic.
My husband had brought home a box of Giant Eagle’s Ginger Snap Granola the week before, and I couldn’t stop funneling handfuls of it into my mouth. He had to take it to work to keep it away from my greedy grasp. Naturally, I bought another box since I was in charge of the grocery shopping this week, and I popped several gorgeous Bosc pears into my cart while I was at it.
The vision I developed as I perused the store was a pie where I could use the Pear Ginger Cider to enhance the flavor of the fruit, and then shortcut a crumble topping with the Ginger Snap Granola. I felt like the smartest woman alive, but I shortly discovered I was not the only genius to use granola as a dessert topping.
A super helpful Giant Eagle employee named Judy helped me find candied ginger because my brain was still getting over a cold, and I kept wandering the aisles forgetting what I was looking for. After I managed to put together a coherent sentence, I told her my plans for the cider and granola, and we had a conversation about how she had just put the Ginger Snap Granola on top of a cheesecake. Judy totally gets me, you guys.
All went according to plan. The pears stayed firm in the oven (no pear mush in my pie!) and the granola made the topping nice and crunchy. Before I knew it, half the pie was gone. I don’t know how it happened! I just kept sneaking bites right out of the pan every time I passed the kitchen. I guess bites add up.
Phillip once again had to take the pie to work to keep it away from my greedy grasp. But I’m definitely making this again for Thanksgiving, so it won’t be long before me and the pie of my dreams are reunited. Get over to Giant Eagle and get this stuff before fall is over (aka the saddest day of all the days). Tell me what dessert you like to use granola in in the comments. I know me and Judy aren’t the only ones.
- 1¼ cups (150 grams) all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1½ teaspoons granulated sugar
- ½ cup (113 grams) very cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes
- ½ cup cold water
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup ice
- Egg wash (1 large egg + a pinch kosher salt)
- 2 cups Giant Eagle Ginger Snap Granola
- 3 tablespoons melted butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 2 cups Giant Eagle Pear Ginger Cider
- ⅓ cup dark brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 3 pounds firm-ripe Bosc pears, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced crosswise
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped candied ginger
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together flour, kosher salt, and sugar. Sprinkle butter cubes over the surface of the flour and cut into the flour using a pastry blender or two forks, until the largest butter chunks are the size of peas. Combine water, vinegar, and ice in a bowl and stir to combine. Sprinkle water into the flour mixture 1-2 tablespoons at a time, folding and stirring after each addition, until the dough comes together. (Try pinching it between your fingers; the should hold together, but not be so wet that it sticks to your fingers. It should take about 7-9 tablespoons of water.) Gather dough into a ball and wrap the dough in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight.
- After the dough has chilled and rested, roll it into a 14-inch round disc. Transfer the disc to a 9-inch pie pan and press it against the sides and bottom. Trim the edges to a ½-inch overhang. Fold the overhang under and crimp the edges. Place the prepared pie crust into the freezer to firm up while you make the topping and filling, at least 30 minutes.
- Place oven racks in the center and bottom positions. Preheat your oven to 425°F.
- In a small bowl, combine granola, melted butter, flour, and sugar and toss to combine. Place the granola topping in the refrigerator.
- Add cider to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Continue to cook until the cider has reduced to ½ cup, about 20 minutes. Pour the reduced cider into a large mixing bowl and allow to cool completely.
- Whisk brown sugar, ginger, cinnamon, salt, and cornstarch into the cider until smooth. Add pear slices and toss to coat them with the cider mixture. Stir in candied ginger. Pour the filling into your prepared pie crust and pack it down so the pears fit together tightly and mound slightly in the center. Cover the filling with the granola topping, but don’t tamp it down too tight. Brush the edges of the pie crust with egg wash.
- Bake the pie on the center rack of the oven at 425°F for 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to 375°F and tent the top of the pie with foil to prevent the granola topping from burning. Bake for another 45-50 minutes, until the crust is golden brown and the filling is bubbling a bit. Cool completely on a wire rack before cutting and serving.